The Palmer Kiwanis Youth Center asks for help in reaching its fundraising goal
The walls are up, the roof is up, and the windows are inside the future Palmer Kiwanis Youth Center.
Project organizers hope to open the facility in time for fall sports. To do this, they ask for more help from the community.
Since groundbreaking last October, backers have raised more than $700,000 of the $1.2 million construction cost.
“We’re just trying to draw attention to it to get us over the goal line,” said Dave Colver, the former Palmer Township supervisor who leads the project.
The two-level youth center replaces a one-story pavilion adjacent to the youth soccer field between the Charles Chrin Community Center and Palmer Elementary School under construction.
Colver said $400,000 in incidental costs was donated. These costs cover design, engineering, demolition, project management, inspections and geotechnical studies.
The project will draw at least $200,000 from the township’s capital recreation funds to cover water, sewer, gas and electrical hookups; bitumen; and a fence, Colver said. These funds are provided by developers in lieu of green space on their sites. These funds are not provided by taxpayers, which means that none of the costs of the youth center are funded by taxpayers. He said the project likely needed an additional $100,000 from those recreational funds.
The grand total for the project is about $1.9 million, Colver said. He is looking for help to bridge the funding gap.
“My call is to try to get the word out to get Palmer businesses and residents involved,” he said. “There are a number of naming opportunities.”
The Palmer Kiwanis Club pledged $150,000, enough for naming rights for the youth center. Lehigh Valley Health Network pledged $150,000 to name the lower level and sports porch.
Colver said the lower tier will have a football locker room, wrestling practice area, batting and pitching cages. The upper level is for civic groups, church groups, scouts and senior activities.
Funders of the youth center will turn over the completed building to the township, Colver said.
“Hopefully we can raise the remaining funds in time to allow fall sports programs to use this facility,” he said.
To donate, write a check payable to Palmer Youth Center Project and mail it to Palmer Youth Center Project, c/o Charles Romfo, 87 Jonathan Drive, Palmer, PA 18045. More information is available at project website, palmeryouthcenter.com.
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Rudy Miller can be reached at [email protected].